By Alan Hutton

14th Aug, 2021 | 11:00am

Hutton makes 'huge' Celtic claim after Welsh update

Alan Hutton has applauded Ange Postecoglou for axing Nir Bitton to bring Stephen Welsh back into the Celtic starting XI.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Scotland international admitted the 21-year-old had been “unlucky” to be pushed out the line up by his Israeli counterpart.

Postecoglou dropped Welsh for new signing Carl Starfelt against Hearts and the first leg versus FK Jablonec.

However, the academy product has started against both Dundee and the home tie against Jablonec, helping keep clean sheets in both.

Hutton admitted he had serious doubts over Bitton’s ability to play in the backline.

As such, he backed the manager’s decision to bring Welsh back into the line up.

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He told Football Insider‘s Russell Edge: “I don’t really fancy Nir Bitton as a centre-back.

I thought Welsh was really unlucky to not play in the opening games.

“Him coming in for the Dundee game was a huge improvement, and with Starfelt starting to find his feet – there could be a good partnership developing there.

“They’ve got a massively experienced goalkeeper behind them, and they looked solid for the first time this season.

“I think we have seen progress, especially as Ange came in late on.

“He had to work with what he had, and Starfelt was just thrown in for the Hearts game – which was tough.

“It’s been a difficult start but it’s improving game on game.”

Celtic take on Hearts next in the League Cup in a rematch of the opening day clash the Bhoys lost 2-1.

In other news, a Celtic icon has tipped the club to bring in more signings before the window closes.